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Today's stories [5.29.10]

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St. Petersburg, Florida:

A Florida woman is offering to sell one of her kidneys to pay
off a hospital debt. Ruth Sparrow ran an ad over the weekend
in The St. Petersburg Times. It read: "KIDNEY - Runs good.
Taking offers."
Sparrow is serious. She owes $20,000 for gall bladder surgery,
and wants to pay it off.
She says both her kidneys work fine and she's willing to part
with one to settle her debt. She offered one directly to Bayfront
Medical Center, which turned it down.
The newspaper has stopped running the ad, since selling organs is
illegal in Florida. 


You Ought to be in Pictures: More than 50 people responded to an invitation
to a casting call for a Robert DeNiro movie being shot in Boston. The only
problem was, the invitations were sent by police. To people with outstanding
arrest warrants. One woman complained she "took a day off from work" to meet
DeNiro. She was led away in handcuffs instead. "It's so nice to scam people
who are scammers," one detective said. The casting call, sent to 3,800
fugitives, offered more than $200 for two hours of work as extras, plus the
chance of "becoming famous." (UPI) 


Tuesday's Wall Street Journal has an article about the Dutch takeover
of JFK airport's International Arrivals building. The Dutch have some
interesting ideas on how to clean it up: 
In Amsterdam, the tile under Schiphol's urinals would pass inspection
in an operating room. But nobody notices. What everybody does notice
is that each urinal has a fly in it. Look harder, and the fly turns
into the black outline of a fly, etched into the porcelain. 
"It improves the aim," says Aad Kieboom. "If a man sees a fly, he aims
at it." Mr. Kieboom, an economist, directs Schiphol's own building
expansion. His staff conducted fly-in-urinal trials and found that
etchings reduce spillage by 80%. 
"We will put flies in the urinals -- yes," Jan Jansen says in a back
office at the Arrivals Building. He is the new Dutch general manager,
the boss as of noon today. "It gives a guy something to think about.
That's the perfect example of process control." 
His New York public relations attendant titters. "Fine, laugh at me,"
Mr. Jansen says. "It works." 


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